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Before | After

Goodbye Three...

It looks like Three has lost a customer.

I don't like dealing with Three Customer Care over the phone, due to the fact that the call centre has been outsourced to India, and I have difficulties understanding thick accents, which every person I have ever dealt with at Three Customer Care has had.

As a result I emailed Three with the details of my problem in the hope that I won't have to talk to an Indian.

The reply I got was basically: "Sorry, we don't do tech support via email, but if you upgrade the software on the phone it might help. Take it in to your Three shop and they can do it for you for free."

Not exactly the best of responses, but it was a start. So on Sunday I went into the local Three shop with the phone. I had already removed my sim card and the memory card in the phone (since they don't like sending phones away with anything in them, just in case (which incidentally doesn't do much for my confidence in their techies)). I talked to one of the guys behind the counter (who recognised me from when I took the phone in for repairs) and he said the "free" upgrade might cost anything up to $70.


It seems that the shop couldn't do the software upgrade itself (some can, some can't) so it would have to be sent away to one of the service centres. The service centre may decide to charge me for the service I was told was free. If the charge was $70 or less, they would do the upgrade and sent it back and I would have to pay to get my phone back. If the charge was more than $70 then they would ring with the quote and get my go ahead before doing the repair.


However, the guy I was dealing with realised that I could do the upgrade myself. All it involves is downloading the file from the SonyEricsson website, and running it, and it would do it for me.

Cool. So I didn't end up putting the phone in at the Three shop, and making use of the free service that might have cost $70, and instead went home. I finally remembered to do it today, so I grabbed the phone and the cable from home when I left this morning, and went to do it here. I connected the phone to the work machine and went through all the setup bits as my computer discovered the 10 or so different items that it has to deal with when I plugged in my phone. I then went to the SonyEricsson website and downloaded the "Sony Ericsson Update Service" which is what was required.

I installed it and started to follow it's instructions, and then ran into a small problem. The data cable that came with the phone wasn't good enough. To use the Update Service you needed to buy a better, more expensive cable. Fuck that!

I have had enough of Three and I have had enough of this phone. I am switching. There are only two things currently holding me back.

Firstly, it means I will have to talk with Three Customer Care again. Not looking forward to that. Now, I'm not trying to be insulting to Indians, but I have difficulty with anyone who doesn't speak "plain English". Anyone who speaks bad English, or English with a heavy accent, I have trouble understanding, and as a result I try an avoid them. However, I don't really need to talk to them yet.

The other problem is more pressing. What new phone? At this point in time I will almost certainly be switching back to Telstra (who I was with before Three), but I still need to work out what phone I want and on what plan. Currently on Three I am paying about $50 a month for up to $79 a month worth of content ($29 cap plus $6 for broadband content and $15 for the phone itself).

Telstra has just announced it's "NextG" network, which is supposedly even better (faster) than the 3G network. Currently only two phones are available on the NextG network, the Samsung A501 and the i-mate JASJAM. The i-mate certainly looks nifty, and I could get it for $80 a month all inclusive. With it being a phone and a PDA all in one, it would probably be a good investment. The Samsung isn't quite as nifty, but I can get it for $30 a month instead.

The other option would be to not go for the NextG network, and stick with the 3G network. In that case I could go for the Nokia N70 ($40 a month for $40 of included content), Nokia N80 ($60 a month for $60 of included content) or the Samsung z510 ($30 a month for $30 of included content). I'm not doing a Sony Ericsson phone again, and the current phone I am borrowing off paradigmshifty is a Motorola and I don't like the interface, so I'm not going for another one of them.

Of course, any of these phones I could get with a higher plan for better value (for instance, the $30 plan is 32c per 30 seconds, while the $80 plan is 23c per 30 seconds).

At the moment I am leaning towards the i-mate, simply because it is the phone and PDA in one, thereby saving me a hell of a lot of hassle. The inbuilt qwerty keyboard looks handy as well.

Not sure at the moment. Thoughts?



( 12 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 11th, 2006 06:44 am (UTC)
I worked with the iMates at MLC a fair bit and they were really good - people liked them. The N70 also gets really good feedback from people I know who have them.
Oct. 11th, 2006 06:52 am (UTC)
Personally I'd go for a Nokia ... but I'm not with Telstra, so...
Oct. 11th, 2006 07:00 am (UTC)
I'm tossing up whether to get the JasJam or a cheaper phone at present also. It's been getting nothing but rave reviews as far as I have found, and having played with one in store yesterday it's very, very sexy. But the extra $50 a month could also be nice - and not all the extra features are really practical for me. I'm not sure how often I'd have call to use MS Excel on the road, for example. YMMV.

Oct. 11th, 2006 07:29 am (UTC)
My personal opinion is that convergence is a great concept but not so great in practice.... much like communism :) Phones don't make great PDAs, and PDAs don't make great phones.

As far as mobile phones go, Nokia gets my vote as the easiest to use - their interface makes more sense than the other leading brands.
Oct. 14th, 2006 11:24 pm (UTC)
Thats because most morons companies just either stuff PDA software into a phone or stuff a speaker and mic into a PDA.

The converged product needs to be redesigned in terms of the human interaction.

Primarily (in my meagre opinion) the problems can be solved (nowadays) by the use of a bluetooth headset.

And ideally I think, modern versions should *really* be looking at including an iPod-like device too.

Meh. My opinion.
Oct. 11th, 2006 08:48 am (UTC)
Er... NextG = 3G... Telstra just happen to be about 2 years behind everyone else in launching their 3G capabilities.
Oct. 11th, 2006 09:06 am (UTC)
Not according to Telstra.

If you look at the Telstra site they have the 3G and NextG as two separate products.

As far as I can tell there is a big difference between the 2, with 3G having speeds up to 348kbs (I think) and the NextG with speeds up to 1.8M

Telstra are (as usual) well behind the rest, but it looks like this NextG network is actually ahead of the competition (for once).

Of course, if anyone is able to prove otherwise, please do. I always treat any good news from Telstra with at least a grain of suspicion.
Oct. 11th, 2006 08:59 am (UTC)
Have you looked at Blackberrys?

You might be able to avoid calling three totally, see if Telstra will just port your number accross and see if that works.
Oct. 11th, 2006 09:07 am (UTC)
Unfortunatly, I still have to deal with them.

Theoeretically I still owe another 9 months worth of payments on my existing phone, so I'll have to talk to them about that.
Oct. 11th, 2006 11:48 am (UTC)
Is it fit for the purpose for which you bought it? If not, the Trade Practices Act can be used to your advantage.
Oct. 11th, 2006 12:26 pm (UTC)
I hate mobile phones & have mine only for emergencies. Costs me about $5 a month in prepaid, so I am not a good person to ask, LOL.
Oct. 13th, 2006 03:53 pm (UTC)

I have a JamIN and its great. I would imagine the JamJam will be the next level up from mine. Its also handy if your friends or business associates have one as you can swap task, etc. Its also fairly user friendly with the PC.
( 12 comments — Leave a comment )

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